I am learning process builder, I am getting confused then what is the difference between process builder and workflow. I mean when to use workflow and when to use process builder? If possible please explain me with examples.

5 Answers 5


A pretty complete overview with examples of which automation tool to be used in which case can be found here.

In short, you can do everything you can do with workflows using process builder as well, except for sending outbound messages with point&click. With process builder, you can also update all child records starting from the parent record, which is not possible with workflows (only vice versa is possible using cross object field updates). I've heard rumors that process builder will replace workflows in the future, which seems a logical step to take for sfdc.

  • 5
    However when you compare the execution speed of workflows and process builder you'll find that workflows are incredibly time efficient. Whenever you can use a workflow instead of process builder you absolutely should.
    – Venko
    Commented Mar 3, 2016 at 11:11
  • 3
    I completely agree with @Venko. Process Builder is powerful, but in my experience it's still unreliable. When Processes crash, debugging the cause is nearly impossible. To make matters worse, sometimes they crash for no apparent reason at all, and that crash will stop Triggers and other custom logic from working. Performance is a definite concern as well. I recently analyzed debug logs for a client that was seeing 20+ second delays when saving a record due to a series of Processes their admin built. Commented Mar 4, 2016 at 13:39

You can use the Process Builder to perform more actions than with workflow:

  • Create a record
  • Update any related record
  • Use a quick action to create a record, update a record, or log a call
  • Launch a flow
  • Send an email
  • Post to Chatter
  • Submit for approval
  • Invoke a process from another process
  • Call apex methods

But the process builder doesn’t support outbound messages.

Workflow does only 4 actions

  • Create Task
  • Update Field
  • Email Alert
  • Outbound Message

More information here


From Salesfroce Docs


Workflow enables you to set up workflow rules that identify what kinds of record changes or additions trigger specified workflow actions, such as sending email alerts and updating record fields.

Visual Workflow

Visual Workflow enables you to create flows, which are applications that are user-triggered instead of event-triggered. Unlike Workflow, which always executes rules and actions behind the scenes, Visual Workflow offers screens for displaying and collecting information from the user running the flow.

Process Builder

Process Builder can be utilized to automate all workflow actions (with the exception of outbound messages). Traditional workflow can still be utilized in parallel, however, Process Builder gives you the ability to do things that workflow can’t. Although, somewhat of a double edged sword this puts some very powerful tools at the disposal of an experienced administrator. - See more at: http://gearscrm.com/overview-of-salesforce-process-builder#sthash.cp8hBLES.dpuf

Here is the good comparison https://developer.salesforce.com/docs/atlas.en-us.salesforce_vpm_guide.meta/salesforce_vpm_guide/vpm_faq_workflow_comparing.htm http://www.runconsultants.com/blog/comparing-salesforce-workflows-to-lightning-process-builder/ https://help.salesforce.com/HTViewHelpDoc?id=vpm_faq_workflow_comparing.htm


I have also found recently that the Process builder gives greater control over Lookup Field Updates.

Traditional workflows only allow you to update a lookup with a hard coded User. Process Builder allows you to access references to allow for more dynamic Lookup field updates.


These limited actions can be used in workflow rules

  1. Create task
  2. Field update
  3. Email alert
  4. Outbound message

Whereas by using process builder we can perform more actions, such as:

  • Create a record
  • Update record
  • Use a quick action to create a record, update a record, or log a call
  • Send an email
  • Field update
  • Submit for approval

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